It has been four years since Puyuma singer-songwriter Sangpuy Katatepan Mavaliyw released his award-winning album Yaangad (椏幹, Life), but his fans long wait ended yesterday, when he released pulu’em (得力量, Gain Strength).
The release came ahead of a weekend of afternoon concerts at the Cloud Gate Theater in New Taipei City’s Tamsui District (淡水) that his team are calling the “Sangpuy 2020 Cloud Gate Theater Sharing Sessions” (桑布伊2020雲門劇場音樂分享會).
He has had a busy four years in the interval: providing vocals for then-Cloud Gate Dance Theatre (雲門舞集) artistic director Lin Hwai-min (林懷民) 2017 production, Formosa (關於島嶼); touring in Europe; a three-concert run at the National Theater in Taipei in April last year as part of the Taiwan International Festival of Arts; helping his mother in the family’s orchard, and of course, working on new songs.
Photo courtesy of Cloud Gate Theater
That was in addition to picking up three awards at the 2017 Golden Melody Awards for Yaangad, including — in an historic win for an Aboriginal artist — Best Album of the Year, as well as his second Best Aboriginal Singer trophy — the first was for 2012’s Dalan (路, Road).
The Taitung County native told a news conference in Taipei on Tuesday that one of the benefits of having some of this year’s tour dates in Europe canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic was that it gave him more time to work on pulu’em, the first album he has coproduced.
Collaborations with several Taiwanese musicians and arrangers led him into some new musical directions, he said, while meeting Belgian violinist-composer Wouter Vandenabeele and Senagalese musician Bao Sissoko, two members of the trio Tamala, at a music festival in Belgium last year, ended up with them working on one of his new songs, A Day in the Life (一天的生活).
Photo courtesy of Cloud Gate Theater
Some of the 10 songs on pulu’em — which means gaining strength and being blessed in the Puyuama language — will be featured at this weekend’s shows, as well as favorites from his first two albums and a few traditional Pinuyumayan songs.
Backing him up on stage will be long-time collaborators on stage and in the studio, Tseng Jen-yi (曾仁義, Nine G) and keyboardist Hong Tzu-long (洪子龍), as well as guitarist Kuo Yi-hao (郭一豪), bass player Jiang Lee-ping (江力平), percussionist Alex Wu (吳政君), drummer James Shen (沈威成), and a three-man chorus made up of members of the Taitung-based Bulareyaung Dance Company (布拉瑞揚舞團) — Ponay Ngangiwan, Siyang Sawawa and Morikilr.
However, once Sangpuy’s shows inside the theater are finished, the fun is set to continue on the lawn outside, with a music and dance performance by the Indigenous Youth Ensemble of Jin-Shan High School (金山高中原民青年團隊), and a chance for audience members to try some traditional Aboriginal food.
Cloud Gate Theater said a limited number of Aboriginal-style meals will be provided free to ticketholders — while supplies last — and beverages can be purchased from vendors or audience members can bring their own.
However, those who plan on sampling the food should bring their own utensils and napkins, the theater said.
WHAT: Sangpuy in concert at Cloud Gate Theater
WHEN: Saturday and Sunday at 4pm
WHERE: Cloud Gate Theater (淡水雲門劇場), 36, Ln 6, Zhongzheng Rd Sec 1, Tamsui District, New Taipei City (新北市淡水區中正路一段6巷36號)
ADMISSION: NT$1,600; available at NTCH box offices and bookstore ticketing outlets, online at www.artsticket.com.tw and at convenience store kiosks nationwide.
While many outdoor festivals have fallen silent, the music plays on this weekend in Central Taiwan. The Compass Taichung International Food and Music Festival is set to kick off on Saturday and Sunday at the city’s Civic Square (市民廣場), popularly known as People’s Park. “There’s no better location in Taichung for an outdoor event,” said Douglas Habecker, co-publisher of Compass Magazine, which hosts the event, now in its 17th year. The spacious park is home to the annual Taichung Jazz Festival, which was canceled this year due to issues related to COVID-19. In addition to the usual genres of rock, blues and hip-hop,
Oct 19 to Oct 25 Ma Yi-kung (馬以工) sighed a breath of relief after the March 1981 meeting to “decide the final fate” of the mangrove forests of Tamsui. Even though then-premier Sun Yun-suan (孫運璿) had announced a year earlier that the Executive Yuan would pledge to protect the forest, the Water Resources Agency still insisted on razing them to build public housing. In June 1980, the forests suffered a serious blow when unscrupulous developers cut down over 30,000m2 of the plants, and experts rushed in to reverse the damage. Sun had announced on Oct. 22, 1980 that the government would
Even though tomorrow’s Uanliu Music Festival (灣流音樂祭) features an all-Taiwanese lineup, virtually no Mandarin will be heard. Instead, the sounds of some of Taiwan’s once-suppressed languages — Hoklo (commonly known as Taiwanese), Hakka, Atayal and Amis — will permeate the two stages and booths next to National Taiwan University’s (NTU) Drunken Moon Lake. The eclectic lineup includes Hakka folk icon Lin Sheng-hsiang (林生祥), last year’s Golden Indie-winning fusion group ChuNoodle (春麵), Hoklo indie rockers Windmill (風籟坊) and Atayal chanteuse Yaway Mawring. Put together and crowdfunded by members of the NTU Student Association’s native languages task force (本土語言小組) and NTU Taigi Bun Sia
Is the trash can half full or half empty? When it comes to handling garbage, Taiwan has made tremendous progress. The proportion of waste that ends up in landfills has shrunk to less than 1 percent. Thanks to one of the world’s highest recycling rates, there isn’t enough household refuse to keep the nation’s incinerators busy. Yet, at the same time, anyone who travels through rural Taiwan will see plenty of bottles, cans and plastic bags by the roadside. Much of this waste persists in the environment as microplastics after it degrades. “Minimizing the amount of waste we create is one way